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News Posted on February 28, 2014

King Hall Faculty Submit Amicus Brief in Support of Writ of Certiorari in Immigration Case

Several King Hall faculty are among the law professors signing onto an amicus brief in support of a writ of certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court immigration case Acebo-Leyva v. Holder. Co-authored by Holly Cooper, Lecturer and Staff Attorney with the UC Davis School of Law Immigration Law Clinic, and Steven Hirsh of Keker & Van Nest LLP, the brief lists Professors Gabriel "Jack" Chin, Bill Ong Hing, Millard A. Murphy, Cruz Reynoso, Leticia Saucedo, James Smith, Rose Cuison Villazor, and Carter "Cappy" White among the amici. Students David Jefferson '14, Sarah Chi '15, James Newman '14, and Zainab Shakoor '15 helped draft the brief.

The case concerns a Cuban immigrant who spent his adult life in the United States as a lawful permanent resident (LPR), but now faces removal based on convictions from 1981. At issue is whether he is eligible for relief under the former Section 212 (c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which was repealed by Congress in 1996. Lower courts have applied different standards as to whether LPRs facing removal as a result of pre-1996 criminal convictions may rely upon 212 (c). The brief argues that the Supreme Court should resolve the lower court split and uphold precedents established in I.N.S. v. St. Cyr and Vartelas v. Holder that prevent new laws from assigning additional consequences to events that occurred prior to their passage.